Friday, April 24, 2009

All About Alphas 8 - Kate Hardy

More on the Modern Heat Alpha today. Today's blogger is the human dynamo Kate Hardy wearing the first of her hats as a Modern Heat author. She'll be back later wearing her Medicals author.

And you'll see that there are differences in Kate's approach to writing her Alpha heroes from the way that the other Modern Heat author approached it. That's because, as I keep saying there are no rules.

And as the editors keep saying 'It's all in the execution.'

Because there is a wide range of types and styles of Alpha heroes. It's not the money or the glamour that makes him and Alpha - those are just trappings. And it's not the powerful, proactive, forceful responses that make him Alpha - those are responses to the challenge he's up against. The alpha is the man at the core. And each author has their own way of creating that man.

Here's Kate's -

The Modern Heat Alpha
This one’s a bit of a movable feast because the line’s still very young and the heroes still have room to change. In general, the Modern Heat Alpha tends to be somewhere between 25 and 35 and hasn’t quite settled down – even if he appears to be the head of a corporation, he’ll be restless because he’s still looking for something. He’s confident and loves a challenge; he’s drop-dead gorgeous and he’ll turn heads whether he’s wearing a business suit or a scruffy pair of jeans and a T-shirt. Have I mentioned that he’s a complete and utter sex-god? (And he’s very, very good at sex.)

And in the case of my heroes, he’s likely to have a nerdy side and a weird job. However, last time I spoke about this, on I Heart Presents, the line editor asked me to point out that they prefer the hero to have a PROPER job. I got away with turning my sheikh in Surrender to the Playboy Sheikh into a volcanologist because… um… it’s how things work, in my books, and my ed knows that if she tells me my hero has to be a banker, it’ll go very badly wrong and she’ll end up with a sex-god archaeologist or a stormchaser . The editors are looking for fresh voices (i.e. they already have one author who does weird jobs and that’s quite enough, thank you), so please give your hero a sensible job. You can, however, give him an extreme hobby… something that gives him a challenge he doesn’t get in his day job.

He’s definitely on his way to success, if not already there; he can see the big picture rather than worrying about tiny details (though if you quiz him, you’ll discover he has a handle on absolutely everything). He works hard (mine have workaholic tendencies); he also plays hard (which is how come my current Modern Heat duet is called ‘To Tame a Playboy’). He’s charming and approachable, wants someone who’ll be his equal, and is quite likely to make an outrageous bet with the heroine. He cares about his family and will put them first (as Giovanni does, in my RNA-award-winning Breakfast at Giovanni’s, aka In Bed With Her Italian Boss). But getting him to admit to loving the heroine… that’s where the she’s going to have a hard time. He’s be completely up front right at the start and say he doesn’t believe in love, doesn’t do love, and he’ll offer her an affair with very defined limits. But when he falls, he falls hard. And my favourite bit is when a Modern Heat alpha finally admits he loves the heroine – because he’ll do it with style!

Kate's latest Modern Heat hero is Luke in PLayboy Boss, Pregnancy of Passion out in the UK in May.

To Do List:

1 – Hire new Personal Assistant

2 – Do not sleep with new Personal Assistant

3 – Re-evaluate point two…

Tycoon Luke Holloway lives on the wild side, but at work he is a professional. However, his new employee Sara Fleet is irresistible. Before long he has unbuttoned his prim and proper assistant and they’re breaking all his rules…over and over again! Super-efficient Sara has never felt so out of control – and now she has to tell her sexy boss she is pregnant with his child!


Anne McAllister said...

I love men with weird jobs, Kate! Or weird hobbies, come to that. It's great to have a variety of heroes to enjoy. I've certainly fallen in love with lots of yours.

Kate Hardy said...

Thank you, Anne!

Jane Holland said...

Hi Kate!


Sorry, my conversational skills just died after that promising opening. But great to read all these helpful things about alphas.

Am right slap-bang in the middle of Chapter 2 of my (fingers-crossed) M&B Regency, and she's about to meet him again, face-to-face, after eight years of tormented absence. And fall over in the mud.

So you'll forgive me, I'm sure, if I'm all of a flutter. ;)

Kate Hardy said...

Jane H - thank you! Good luck with the book :o)


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